-   Slackware (
-   -   Need advice installing slackware to a GPT/UEFI system (

arubin 09-05-2012 02:37 AM

Need advice installing slackware to a GPT/UEFI system
I took delivery of a new computer and am having difficulty with the Slackware 13.37 installation. I want to dual boot with windows

Asus P9X79 LE motherboard
Sda 120GB SSD
Sdb 1TB with Windows 7

My problem is that the discs are formatted with GPT and the boot mechanism is UEFI. The system is set to boot to Windows off sdb. I want to install Slackware to the SSD using most of sdb for home.

I managed to partition the disc with gpart. I had a problem with the slackware installation process recognising the partition I had earmarked for swap but this was fixed with makeswap /dev/sdb3. I had thought to install LILO to sda but this stalled.

Assuming that the installation until that point went OK my main problem seems to be how to get this to boot. My understanding now is that LILO will not work with GPT/UEFI systems.

I wonder if either of these will work.

Install Grub2 to sda. Is it possible to get into my uncompleted slackware installation and install Grub2?

If I repartition sda with fdisk will it then accept LILO writing to MBR? Since Windows in on sdb the repartition shouldn’t damage Windows. But will this work?

I suppose a third alternative might be to boot of a usb

( I suppose I need to boot of the slackware DVD and chroot into the installation to get a clue what is going on but I did have to get to bed last night)


ruario 09-05-2012 02:58 AM

Boot from the Slackware CD/DVD/USB and use the boot prompt to start Slackware from the hard disk (instructions are given above the boot prompt on how to do this). You can then install either Grub2 or the Syslinux package from Slackware 14.0RC4. I wrote about how to use Grub2 or Syslinux with GPT disks on Slackware in this thread.

P.S. I have been meaning to get this info (using GPT partitioning with Slackware) on the SlackDocs wiki but have not had the time yet. If any kind soul wants to do so they have my blessing to reuse anything I have written in that thread in any way they see fit. I require no credit.

ruario 09-05-2012 03:00 AM

I just noticed this comment:


Originally Posted by arubin (Post 4773024)
the boot mechanism is UEFI

If you can simulate a BIOS (most UEFI systems can) you can use Syslinux. If not you will need to use Grub2 (or elilo, which I have not yet tested).

ack_iix 09-05-2012 04:42 AM

Hi Arubin,

I have a similar setup with you and have succeed in dual booting Slackware64 and Windows 7 x64 in UEFI mode, you can read my experience on my post here:

And this site: has plenty of information regarding booting Linux in UEFI mode and GPT disk format.

arubin 09-05-2012 05:26 AM

ruario - Thanks. I did try the boot with DVD/ start Slackware at prompt method last night but it woudn't boot. It was late and I was tired so I will try again tonight. I will have a look at the thread you referenced. I don't know anything about syslinux and I am a little wary now of messing with the boot sector of sdb, the disc which holds windows on this PC.

ack_ixix - Thanks for the pointer. It is complicated by the need to compile a 3.3 kernel and I would rather stick with Pat's chosen kernel if possible.

My inclination is to go the grub2 root. I have noticed this on the Slackbuild page


If you want to install grub2 on GPT,
you need to put a BIOS boot partition on GPT.

This requires os-prober, gnu-unifont, and help2man
So will I have to create a BIOS boot partition of sda?

ruario 09-05-2012 06:13 AM


Originally Posted by arubin (Post 4773155)
So will I have to create a BIOS boot partition of sda?

You only need a BIOS boot partition if you are using a BIOS (or BIOS compatibility booting in UEFI) and Grub2. Also it is worth noting that the BIOS boot partition can be anywhere on the disk (and it only needs to be 1Mb).

ruario 09-05-2012 06:30 AM


Originally Posted by arubin (Post 4773155)
ruario - Thanks. I did try the boot with DVD/ start Slackware at prompt method last night but it woudn't boot.

Ok, that is a problem. To boot the DVD you will either need to enable BIOS compatibility mode in EFI (most have this option) or remaster your own Slackware DVD so that works with EFI. The official DVDs do not support EFi booting.

ruario 09-05-2012 06:37 AM

This post is helpful regarding how to master your own EFI capable Slackware DVD.

If you are using Slackware 13.37 (which you said you would) you will also need to recompiled the a kernel with EFI Framebuffer support turned on. If however you decide to use Slackware 14.0RC4 you can skip this step as it is already on in the default Slackware kernels. You will still need to remaster the DVD with elilo though like rwebber explained.

ruario 09-05-2012 07:05 AM

Another option, which would probably work (though I have not tested it) would be to use an EFI boot CD/DVD from another distro. For example, Ubuntu provides "Mac" desktop CDs. The only thing different about these is that they are EFI boot CD/DVD (because Mac's use EFI). They should actually boot on any EFI based PC. At the boot prompt you would then specify the Slackware 14.0RC4 kernel and initrd stored on some other media (e.g. a USB pendrive or something). Once booted you should be able to partition and start the Slackware installer as normal. Skip the Lilo section and install no bootloader. After install chroot into your new Slackware from the Slackware install environment and fetch Grub2 from Slackbuilds (or some other EFI capable bootloader like elilo), then install and configure this.

If all goes to plan you should now have Slackware installed. Or at least that is the theory. This is entirely untested.

arubin 09-05-2012 01:35 PM


I have installed Slackware to sda2 and I have installed grub2 to sda

I can boot into my Slackware installation either from the grub2 menu or from a usb drive. I need to figure out how to set the grub menu. I now have a separate problem with startx. Kde starts and you can see the kde screen for a couple of seconds but then it crashes with a sementation fault. kglobaccel:Fatal IO error

Fatal server error:
[ 453.594] Caught signal 11 (Segmentation fault). Server aborting

ruario 09-05-2012 01:45 PM

can you boot a simpler window manager?

TobiSGD 09-05-2012 02:22 PM

Do you use the integrated Intel video or a separate video card?

arubin 09-05-2012 02:24 PM


Do you use the integrated Intel video or a separate video card?
Nvidea. I'mm going to try and install the drivers with sbopkg

arubin 09-05-2012 02:54 PM

Well the nvidea driver install failed. Couldnt find the file.

I also having difficulty working out how to get grub.cfg. I have read that I need to run update but this does not appear to exist

arubin 09-05-2012 02:57 PM

Ok. I have now run NVIDIA installer from their site and I am in kde!

Still have grub.cgf to figure out

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:39 PM.